Loved People Love

Read: 1 Peter 1:22–2:3

This word is the good news. (v. 26)

Last year brought out some of the worst in our human relationships. People pointed fingers of blame over a pandemic. Racial tensions reached a tipping point. There were even fights over face masks. In such turbulent times, “Love one another earnestly from a pure heart” (v. 23) looks improbable. That kind of love can only be offered by people who first know they are so loved by God.

Peter noted again that the basis of our life in Christ and our love for others is that we are “born again” (v. 23; see v. 3). Jesus had told Nicodemus the same: “Unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Here Peter explained that God’s Word was the means by which we experience that new birth. God’s Word is living and abiding but unlike anything else that lives: “The grass withers, and the flower falls, but the word of the Lord remains forever” (1 Peter 1:24-25). That Word is the “pure spiritual milk,” which believers should long for like newborn infants (2:2).

As we daily crave God’s Word and take it into our lives, we are reminded that we are so loved by God that he gave us his only begotten Son (John 3:16). When we know that God has so loved the whole world in Jesus, we begin to see other people in a different light. Suddenly malice, deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander (1 Peter 2:1) evaporate. Loved people love people. —Jon Opgenorth

As you pray, ask God to help you love others earnestly.

About the Author

Rev. Jon Opgenorth serves as president of Words of Hope. Previously, he served for 18 years as senior pastor at Trinity Reformed Church in Orange City, Iowa. In preparation for ministry, he received a BA in Religion from Northwestern College, and an MDiv from Fuller Theological Seminary.

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